Subscribe Contribute Advertise Facebook Twitter Instagram Forums Newsletter
Need Gear Advice
Display Avatars Sort By:
Devin Konecny
(pupuplader) - F
Need Gear Advice on 02/06/2010 21:22:33 MST Print View

I am looking for a bargain sleeping bag. I dont have a bag right now and usually just sleep in my gear, a little crazy for winter camping in Colorado. So I think that it might be a good idea to finally get a bag. I only have $100-130 to spend. So far I have been looking at the REI Sub Kilo +20

I am also looking for a new tent so that my girlfriend will go up with me. I would like a four season, so I am looking at the GoLite Utopia 2. I have never had a shelter before so would a tarp work fine for the bottom?

Any ideas and suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

Mark Verber
(verber) - MLife

Locale: San Francisco Bay Area
Re: Need Gear Advice on 02/06/2010 22:39:12 MST Print View

If you are used to using your clothing to sleep (in CO winter?!) what sort of clothing are you bringing in what sort of conditions? The average human needs 2x the amount of insulate to sleep comfortably as they need when standing around. With such warm clothing you should make sure your sleep system can incorporate your clothing. You might want to make a DIY quilt which would provide enough room so your clothing's loft doesn't get collapsed.

The sub kilo is a pretty good deal at $130. Two things I would note (1) it's a pretty narrow bag with 57" shoulder girth. Works fine for several of my friends, but I wouldn't use because I find anything less than around 61" too confining. (2) Based on my friends experiences, I would guess that REI is using the "keep you safe" rating value to have the subkilo at 20F. Unless you run hot, I don't think you will be really "comfortable" down to 20F in the sub kilo wearing just a base layer. Extra clothing should be fine. Typically the cheapest sleeping bags will be to find a good quality used down bag.

I don't have any personal experience with the Utopia 2. There was a brief discussion in a BPL thread about using the utopia 2 in snow. Provided you aren't trying to keep out crawling bugs or standing water (e.g. winter), the Utopia 2 in specific, a floorless shelter in general with a ground cloth (I recommend polycro) works great. I generally prefer pyramid tarps for the winter.


Edited by verber on 02/07/2010 08:15:47 MST.

Devin Konecny
(pupuplader) - F
gear on 02/06/2010 23:04:32 MST Print View

Yeah Im pretty crazy camping in colorado winter with no sleeping bag. I have a nice thick base layer, wool pants, rain jacket, fleece, wool gloves and hat. I have been three times when it has gotten below zero. Those nights I didnt sleep and just stayed next to the fire. But with a new tent and sleeping bag I dont think I will have a problem.

Andy F
(AndyF) - M

Locale: Midwest/Midatlantic
RE: Need Gear Advice on 02/07/2010 00:34:06 MST Print View

Kelty makes fairly inexpensive sleeping bags which you can find for even cheaper at the right place and right time. has their brand of 500 fill power down sleeping bag. Any of these will be better than what you're using now. :D

Trevor Leaf
(HomerJay) - F
Re: Need Gear Advice on 02/07/2010 01:46:21 MST Print View

if you're on the super budget you site, you might want to go to one of the REI used gear sales. With their 100% guarantee, people return gear for every reason imaginable. Some of the items are barely used because the consumer decided they didn't like the color or whatever. Call up your local store and ask them when they are holding their next one and then show up at least a half hour prior to the store opening as the best stuff tends to go fast to people putting the good stuff up on Ebay

Link .
(annapurna) - MLife
Re: Need Gear Advice on 02/07/2010 02:08:45 MST Print View


Edited by annapurna on 05/02/2010 06:25:35 MDT.

Ken Bennett
(ken_bennett) - F

Locale: southeastern usa
Campmor down bags on 02/07/2010 08:32:26 MST Print View

You can get the Campmor 0-F down mummy bag for maybe $150, and the 20-F bag for about $120. Both are decent inexpensive down bags.

Devin Konecny
(pupuplader) - F
tent on 02/07/2010 10:36:43 MST Print View

Still haven't decided on the Utopia 2 yet, just looking around at four season tents.

Just ordered the REI Sub Kilo, if its not going to work REI's return policy is great.

Thanks for the help so far.

Ryan Tucker
(BeartoothTucker) - M
Kelty on 02/07/2010 11:25:07 MST Print View

I got a Kelty Light Year I have been trying to sell. Brand New, won it.

$85 plus shipping.

Devin Konecny
(pupuplader) - F
kelty on 02/07/2010 11:35:11 MST Print View

What is the tempurature rating on the kelty light year that you have?

Ryan Tucker
(BeartoothTucker) - M
20 degree on 02/07/2010 20:50:22 MST Print View

20 degree

Devin Konecny
(pupuplader) - F
Kilo Sub on 02/12/2010 13:41:31 MST Print View

I am picking up my Kilo Sub from REI today, I am going to test it out this weekend and I will let you know how it preforms.

I also just purchased a Utopia 2+
Thanks Anna for the link to

I will give you all a review of the Utopia 2+ when it arrives.

Thanks for all the advice.


Chris Gray
(ChrisFol) - F

Locale: Denver, Coloado
Re: Kilo Sub on 02/12/2010 13:57:59 MST Print View

Be aware that although this bag is rated at +20, I would imagine that the rating is rather generous and it may be more like a +25/+30 down bag.

I only mention this because overnight temperature lows in Denver (Lakewood is just down the US-6) have been +25 and below in recent days, so make sure you have adequate insulation both clothing wise and in the form of padding underneath.

Jim W.
(jimqpublic) - MLife

Locale: So-Cal
Sub-Kilo on 02/12/2010 14:00:46 MST Print View

If you compare REI's discontinued Sub-Kilo with the new Halo:

Materials, fill are very similar.
Halo is slightly bigger girth.
Halo is slightly heavier.
Halo is rated 5-10 degrees higher temp.
Halo uses EN rating

That all suggests that the 25 degree Halo is probably as warm or warmer than the Sub-Kilo 15. I've been very comfortable at 25 in my Sub-Kilo 15 (women's long) wearing shorts and t-shirt.

Devin Konecny
(pupuplader) - F
Kilo Sub on 02/12/2010 14:09:11 MST Print View

I have already done two overnight trips when it has gone below zero without a sleeping bag I am pretty sure that I am going to be okay. Though you never know, that is why I plan on testing the bag out in my backyard first.